Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy offers high-speed fun for rookie racers

Learn what it takes to become the best racer

By Thomas Metevia - Graham Media Group

ORLANDO, Fla. - Attention racing rookies: Rev your engines because Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy officially opened at Disney's Hollywood Studios. We decided to head over to Disney property and check the show out for ourselves.

Located inside Sunset Showcase, near Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster, Lightning McQueen's Racing Academy features characters from the Disney•Pixar "Cars" universe. The show will help give the youngest of racers another thing to enjoy inside the park while also giving you 10-minutes of air conditioned heaven for those days when you just can't handle the heat.


Class is in session

As you're driving in you'll notice the towering 95 in the back of the theater. Walk past it, and you will find a number of places to sit surrounding a circular stage. The theater uses bench seating, but don't worry; the show is short, so you won't be sitting for very long. You're surrounded by a massive wraparound screen that is close to two stories tall and over 200 feet long, so you'll have a perfect view no matter where you park.

After a fun musical introduction from the one and only Tow Mater, Lightning McQueen makes his grand entrance. He shows you everything he's learned during his racing career while using his high-tech racing simulator. Then it's your turn to learn how to be a great racer from the seven-time Piston Cup champion

During his presentation, McQueen is interrupted by Chick Hicks, who we know won the Piston Cup after McQueen decided to help out fellow racer, Strip 'The King' Weathers. Hicks hacks into the racing simulator and challenges McQueen to race.

McQueen has realized that things don't always go as planned but with help from his friends, Mater and trainer-turned-race car Cruz Ramirez, as well as the gang back at Radiator Springs, McQueen is ready for the challenge. 


Photo ops

The party continues even after the Racing Academy has ended. Walk through Cars Courtyard and you'll find Ramirez ready to pose for photos with all of her fans. You may remember Ramirez being parked at Pixar Place, but now that the Incredibles have moved in, she's found a new home at the Racing Academy.


High-octane entertainment

The little racers will enjoy dancing and playing games with Lightning's Pit Crew during “DJ’s Ready! Set! Party Time!” which has shows in the courtyard throughout the day. The show invites guests to gather around DJ for "Cars"-inspired dances and games. Racers can dance to popular songs like "Car Wash" and "Life is a Highway" or play DJ Says with the pit crew. 


While most people are anxiously awaiting the opening of Star Wars Land: Galaxy's Edge at Disney's Hollywood Studios, the "Cars" franchise is still incredibly popular with kids, and the Racing Academy is the perfect way to include the films inside the park. We highly recommend!

Have you visited the Racing Academy? What did you think? Let us know.

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